£770,000 loans theft

A FINANCE broker from Creeting St Mary has been convicted of stealing more than £770,000 from Barclays Bank.

Daron Mann, of Jordan Close, was convicted of two offences of theft of a credit balance at Ipswich Crown Court on Monday.

The 41-year-old had denied both offences.

The court heard that Mann had been ‘robbing Peter to pay Paul’, committing the thefts as he struggled with financial problems.

He had acted as a go-between to obtain loans for two haulage companies to finance the purchase of nine new lorries but the money never reached the suppliers and instead was used by Mann to pay off his own debts.

Andrew Shaw, prosecuting, told the jury that Mann had been the sole director of Anglo Asset Finance and was authorised to deal with Barclays. He obtained loans of £283,000 and £490,255 for the lorries between July and October 2008.

No money for the lorries reached the suppliers, Renault, at Felixstowe, despite documentation that was supplied to Barclays by another Suffolk company, AA Car, Commercial and Agricultural Sales Ltd, saying that the vehicles had been purchased.

Fraud investigators from Barclays were called in when the haulage companies failed to make repayments, the court heard. It emerged that it was because the lorries were never delivered.

When arrested and questioned by police Mann said he was owed £500,000 by a businessman and when the money from Barclays arrived he had believed it was settlement of the debt.

Mann will be sentenced later with Adam Taylor, formerly of Church Street, Stradbroke, who was running AA Car, Commercial and Agricultural Sales Ltd when the offences were committed.

Taylor, 38, of Winters Road, pleaded guilty to fraud by making false representation to Barclays Bank between June and October 2008. He also admitted two charges of theft of a credit balance from Barclays, and two offences of converting criminal property.